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Out Here: What are our biases?

Published: Tuesday, March 18, 2014 2:30 p.m. CDT

A few days ago, I wrote that the Republicans had a lot more competition in their primaries than the Democrats. I suggested that Democrats consider voting in the GOP primary because key local races had no Democrats.

The column prompted a Facebook discussion about political bias in our newspaper.

One person wrote that we were keeping out news about Matt Becker, write-in candidate for the Democratic primary for the 90th House District, which is currently represented by Tom Demmer, R-Dixon, who is running unopposed in his primary.

"Doesn't the Shaw family back Demmer? And isn't the Shaw family a part of the Sauk Valley Newspapers? Hmmm. Weird. No wonder nobody has heard of Matt Becker!" one Facebook commenter wrote.

Another poster, Tom Boken, noted – correctly – that Shaw Media CEO Tom Shaw donated $1,000 to Demmer's campaign in the last go-around, in which he faced Boken.

Actually, we have had references to Matt Becker in the newspaper. A couple of months ago, someone told me about his candidacy but warned that Becker may not want to do an interview with us because of our CEO's support of Republicans.

I called Becker and told him I would be happy to interview him. He said he'd get back with me. He didn't.

If you read the comments about our biases, you have found out that Sauk Valley Media's newsroom dwellers are apparently loyal soldiers for Republican causes – until we aren't.

In another part of my column, I noted that public employee unions were trying to encourage their mostly Democratic members to ask for the GOP ballot so they could vote for the union-friendly Kirk Dillard over the union-unfriendly Bruce Rauner.

That part of my column irritated at least one reader.

"Giuliani's little plug for Democrats to vote against Rauner is him letting his politics influence his writing. I'm sure he wouldn't agree, but it's obvious to everyone else, David."

Obvious to everyone, except for those who take the opposite view.

For the record, Shaw Media endorsed Bruce Rauner, and this newspaper published the company's editorial March 1.

Am I in trouble?

David Giuliani is a news editor for Sauk Valley Media. You can reach him at dgiuliani@saukvalley.com or 800-798-4085, ext. 525. Follow him on Twitter: @DGiuliani_SVM.

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